GIRARD — The Crawford County Commission continued work with the county budget Tuesday, including a look at fire district budgets.

The commission looked at the increases between last year’s total budget and the proposed budget for both fire districts one and two. In July, Crawford County Fire District No. 1 Chief Mike Ryan attended a commission meeting to extend a request from the district’s board of directors for a 1.5 mill increase. One mill is equal to $1 per every $1,000 of assessed value.

District No. 2 has made a similar request, and the commission agreed they would like to speak with a representative to hear the district’s plans for the increased budget. Ryan laid out the need for district one’s increase when he attended a commission meeting.

The commission plans to host a work session Friday after its regular meeting to finalize discussions on the budget.

Commissioner Jeff Murphy reported that the fairgrounds look very good — all the way down to re-seeding where ground was disturbed.

“They’ve done some very good work out there and it looks really nice,” he said. “I’m very happy with it.”

The new sewer system is fully functional, although the new bathroom facility is not yet finished.

Commissioner Carl Wood said equipment testing for chip and seal application should start this week on Wednesday, and full-force chip and seal would begin Monday of next week.

Wood also presented a change order on a contract for three dump trucks ordered by the commission. The change order would include strobe lights placed on the four corners of the dump beds of each truck. The cost is $850 per truck. The commission approved the change order.

“If it’s a safety issue, we really need to do it,” Commissioner Tom Moody said.

Pro Energy Solutions Team Leader Mike Williams discussed possible cost savings from the purchase of natural gas for the county. Williams said if an entity’s usage is high enough, Kansas Gas Service will allow the gas to be purchased through another party.

Williams predicted he could save the county around 15 percent on natural gas costs. He requested the county’s usage information at all of its large building so he may prepare a proposal.

The county granted his request.

— Chance Hoener is a staff writer for the Morning Sun. He can be emailed at choener@morningsun.net or follow him on Twitter @ReporterChance.